Simply from a facts standpoint, Chris Christie will go down in history and infamy as one of the least popular governors of any American state ever. And this disliking and almost universal disdain for Christie isn’t solely based on people’s opinions as he’s honestly earned some of the negative press he’s received.

 

For starters, the infamous Bridgegate scandal, where Christie and his staff knowingly created traffic jams along with closing lanes on the upper level of The George Washington Bridge, caused many previous supporters of Christie to change their minds. The partial closing of George Washington Bridge led to more tragic events than just mild inconveniences, especially in the situation where a 91-year-old woman died from cardiac arrest due to slower emergency response times.  

 

The ensuing controversy and federal investigations led to information that Christie and his administration knowingly closed parts of The George Washington Bridge, leading to the previous deputy executive director of Port Authority of New York, Bill Baroni, and a former top aide named Bridget Anne Kelly being sent to prison on abuse of power charges. While Governor Christie himself didn’t serve any prison time, the whole scandal and obvious misuse of power certainly left a negative taste in the mouths of many New Jerseyans. And to top off the already large unpopularity of Christie, the fact that he endorsed Trump, the very man who constantly insulted him, only increased that very unpopularity.

 

One of the most publicized and anticipated elections of last week was the gubernatorial election of New Jersey. The main candidates were Democratic former US Ambassador to Germany Phil Murphy and Republican Lieutenant Governor of New Jersey Kim Guadagno. At the time of the election, Chris Christie’s approval rating as governor was at 15 percent, making him the least popular governor in the state’s history. Due to Guadagno’s status as Lieutenant Governor and undying loyalty to Christie, even someone’s who’s not a political analyst could’ve seen that she was at a great disadvantage.

 

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It came to the surprise of no one when last Tuesday, Democrat Phil Murphy won the gubernatorial election. And to the dismay of the few supporters that Chris Christie still had, Phil Murphy is very much the antithesis of Christie and his hardline conservative policies which Guadagno would’ve potentially continued. For instance, Christie is notoriously anti-marijuana legalization while Murphy wants legalization of marijuana within the first 100 days of being elected, partially due to his campaign estimates of $300 million in tax revenue.

 

Whereas Christie was very conservative in her policies, Murphy is notably more liberal, not to the point of Bernie-like democratic socialism but still more liberal than his predecessor. Among many changes in policies, Murphy wants to make tuition-free community college a reality in New Jersey along with legislating to turn the minimum wage into $15, a bill previously vetoed by Christie. And in a move proving to be the opposite of Christie’s previous extremely conservative policies, Murphy plans on providing more resources and funding to Planned Parenthood.

 

Against what Christie’s previous policies have stated on Americans’ rights to own firearms, Murphy plans on stricter gun laws, including background checks, more proper training on firearm safety and the banning of .50 caliber rifles.

 

Murphy plans on fighting large and complex issues such as the gender gap in pay discrimination and fighting the growing opioid epidemic, including plans to lower the cost of Narcan, a potentially life-saving drug that combats opioid overdose.

 

The vast differences between Christie and Murphy are clearly evident, yet may very well be a breath of fresh air that the majority of New Jerseyans have needed for quite sometime.

 

What are your feelings on the recent election? Tweet me at @CaptainKasoff and we’ll discuss it.